“Hurry up and wait!” Now that’s a saying I’ve heard many times - in fact, I’m betting most of us have heard it many times. It’s a favorite at certain job sites. Times when you have to look busy but there’s not a lot of work to be busy with. You’re stuck in waiting mode, but you can’t take a break either. When you know there will be something to do, but right now there’s not a lot to do, so you have to look like you have something to do, until you will indeed have something to do: that is the very essence of ‘hurry up and wait.’ 

As Spring arrives, I very much find myself in a ‘hurry up and wait’ mood. The weather’s nice, but it’s not quite that nice yet. (As every native Wisconsinite knows, we’ve got at least two weeks of dismal, drizzly rain to look forward to at some point here). I’m in a hurry to get out, to mow the lawn, to see dandelions, to watch baseball - but I still have to wait.

As the vaccine arrives, the country finds itself very much in a ‘hurry up and wait’ mood.   This is a very simple matter of basic observation. People want to get out, they want to go to sports games, they want to plan a wedding for hundreds of friends and family. Many others simply want to get out of the fear and anxiety Covid has placed on them. Our country, indeed the world, is very much in a hurry - but we still have to wait a little longer. 

Now in all these situations having to ‘hurry up and wait’ is a matter of annoyance. It builds frustration. And the truth is that it can be exactly the same for us Christians.

Soon it will be Holy Week, when we once again celebrate the great acts of Christ that won our salvation. We see His bitter sufferings and death, we listen with joy as the proclamation rings out, ‘He is risen!’ We know that by these things Jesus has won for us an eternity of blessings. But we don’t see them. We don’t see heaven, we shake hands with angels….yet. 

Oh, but we want to!

We want to be in perfection now, we want to stand in triumph and look down contemptuously at death’s (our death’s) beaten form. And the more we connect ourselves to God’s Word, ever brighter burns the fire of desire in our hearts to hold eternal life in our hands, to see our Jesus face to face. We are in a hurry!!! But we still have to wait. 

But it is all OK dear friends. 

Because for a Christian having to ‘hurry up and wait’ is not a source of frustration but a source of strength. God will bring us all the blessings he won for us on Calvary. But until he does it’s not like we have to stand around pretending to be busy. We have plenty of good things to do. To love one another, to learn ever anew the way of patience, to walk humbly with our God, to share the Word of life to a dying world. Yes, we have plenty of good things to do as we wait for Jesus. 

When it comes to Jesus, it is OK for a Christian to hurry up and wait.

No, it’s GOOD to hurry up and wait.

So this Holy week, let’s do just that.

Pastor Joshua Zarling